When you’re in startup mode, it can feel like there isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done. But one thing that should be a priority is your customer care strategy.
Creating a great customer care program is just one more way to have a competitive advantage in the world of startups. Below are six tips on how startups can optimize their customer care program to keep growing fast while continuing to be successful.
1. Know How to Grow
As mentioned above, successful startups often see explosive growth and need to scale quickly. That’s why choosing a contact center partner that can grow with a brand at any stage is the first step.
As a startup grows, customer expectations change, along with volume and types of interactions. A startup’s contact center partner should be knowledgeable in how to shift a customer service strategy from reactive to proactive mode, while recommending ways to solve issues before they even become a problem.
2. Build Your Dream Team
When a startup becomes big enough to have a dedicated customer service team, hiring the right people is crucial. It’s easy to train team members on products and tools, but it’s much harder to teach them the desire to help people or have a passion for what a brand stands for.
Brands should ensure that their hiring profiles list attributes that align with their core values. When interviewing, search for traits that are “uncapturable on paper”. Let’s use empathy as an example. A candidate may not have direct experience to walk a customer through a specific situation, but having certain indirect experience would allow them to empathize with the situation. One way to evaluate this is to ask candidates: “When have you walked a customer through a situation?” or “Can you provide an example of where you did x, y, z?”.
Also Read: Finding the Right Fit For Your Brand
3. You Choose, You Don’t Lose
It’s common for startups to try the easy route when first implementing their customer service strategy (e.g. email only). Doing an in-depth analysis on their current customer base will help to define their personas and preferences. Another option is to send a simple survey out to their current customer base to find out how they prefer to reach the brand.
Contact center partners can help startups choose the right omnichannel solutions that not only represent where their customers are, but also which ones are scalable as they grow in the future.
4. Self-Serve to Stay Ahead of the Curve
Startups can make things easier for everyone (including their budget) by making sure self-service is an accessible option, allowing customers to find the answers they need at any time without having to actually talk to a human.
This means prioritizing things like a customized IVR, robust FAQ page, in-depth search functions and easy-to-download resources on their website or app.
5. Personalize, Personalize, Personalize
Self-service is great, but sometimes customers still need to reach a real person. Customer care is a vital (and often overlooked) way to create stronger connections between a brand and their customers, especially with newer brands. That’s why every interaction should be personalized.
People want to feel like they’re talking to a real human being, not a robot. This means avoiding scripted responses and encouraging tailored, genuine interactions whenever possible.
6. Listen & Learn
Customer care teams talk and interact with a startup’s customers every single day. That’s why they are the best source for feedback. Gathering their thoughts on a consistent basis can be a key driver in making big changes on a program because it gives insight into how customers feel about a brand’s products, website, etc. This can be done through internal surveys or regular team meetings to discuss their findings.
First impressions are paramount for startups. That’s why a customer care team is a necessity. Not only can they provide extremely valuable data around strategy and product development, but they can be the front line warriors helping to create brand advocates and loyal customers for many years to come.